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Sunday, December 21, 2014

Data Register Again?

(1) ... misleading small business owners to register their company details with Data Register, as if it were a bona fide representative of ACRA (Accounting and Corporate Regulatory Authority).

(2) ... subsequently charging small business owners for the ummm... bogus "registration".

Small business owners need to pay a $20 re-registration fee to ACRA to ensure their business registrations are current and properly registered with ACRA as a legal business entity. Data Register Pte Ltd charges me $490 for a subscription that I never signed up for.

I did not register my business data through Data Register Pte Ltd in January 2014. I ignored their correspondance, and then I was pleased to find that ACRA had taken action. Good! There is justice in Singapore.

Unpleasant Surprise
Since I had not registered any of my business data with Data Register Pte Ltd, I was very surprised to receive an invoice and a threatening letter.

I have been threatened with a letter from Data Register Pte Ltd, stating that Data Register Pte Ltd's lawyers "Rodyk & Davidson, LLP" will take me to task if I do not pay up $490 for "subscription fees" (despite the fact that I have subscribed to nothing at all from Data Register Pte Ltd). In addition, there is a 8% per annum penalty for late payment. 

Gee... sounds a bit like a loan shark don't you think? At least a loan shark has lent out money and charges interest. In my case, there has been absolutely NO TRANSACTION, and I am both threatened and penalised.

Firstly, I really doubt "Rodyk & Davidson, LLP" are their lawyers. Secondly, I also wonder if the good sirs at "Rodyk & Davidson, LLP" are aware that their good name is being used to threaten people to pay up $490 (with 8% per annum late penalty) for absolutely NO TRANSACTION at all.

What Happened to the Investigation Started in January 2014?
Data Register provides its bank details and address. One wonders what the relevant authorities have been doing since January 2014 because Data Register Pte Ltd is seemingly legally doing something that seems wrong on many levels.

Should not our country's laws be re-defined to bring such companies to justice? I did not fall for Data Register Pte Ltd's shenanigans but others might.

This company has an address and a phone number. The phone number does not answer, and I have not checked out the address. The company does provide a bank account number (which is bona fide or else their "strong armed sales tactics" will not work). Surely, the police can track these bullies through that bank account?

It is a thuggish business practice. There is not much difference between ...

- a mafioso saying "I have you under my protection. Pay me protection money."
- Data Register Pte Ltd saying "I have you in my subscribers' list. Pay me subscription fees."

I have no idea what this subscription is all about. I have never subscribed to Data Register. Why am I being charged $490, threatened and penalised? What happened to the strong arm of the law that should be protecting me?

Why do our Singapore laws allow Data Register Pte Ltd to operate like this (in broad daylight) in December 2014, when ACRA has already filed 78 charges against Data Register Pte Ltd in January 2014?

It boggles the mind.

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